What a great start for the 9th Season of Perogies and Jam on October 20!
The weather was warm outside as music fans arrived expecting great local music and they were warmly greeted indoors at the Vegreville Sunshine Club by Anna Tomyn. As the musicians assembled on stage, Emcee Don Harfield welcomed the audience to another season of local musical talent, good food and an evening of fun together.
There were two stages set up for both open mic and music jamming. The upper stage allowed for group performances and the lower stage for a semi-circle of rotating musicians to lead in their chosen song.
The music started at 6:45 pm with Darlene Thibault on guitar performing the song “Coat of Many Colours” with Ralph Lange and Albert Stewart accompanying her on fiddle. Next up was young Clayden Lutzak playing “Red Wing” on fiddle with other musicians playing along. The way the music jam works is that each performer announces their name, their chosen song and the key in which it will be played. In this way, the audience gets to know the musician, and the other musicians know how they can contribute to the song.
New performers to our stage this evening included Gayle Gagne on guitar and vocals, Don Thompson on electric bass and vocals, Anita Lemko on keyboard and vocals, and Clayden Lutzak on fiddle. Frequent musicians included Darlene Thibault on guitar and vocals, Ralph Lange on upright bass, fiddle, accordion and vocals, Randy Kereliuk on guitar and vocals, Rob Hughes on drums and cajon, Denver Balid on drums and cajon, Lorne Fill on guitar and vocals, and Albert Stewart on fiddle.
Our local poet, Mary Leonty recited two of her original poems “On the Hilltop” and “The Great White Goose” followed by two other poems “The Clock of Life” and “The Bridge”. As she started, Mary jokingly suggested that she would be reciting her poems in the key of B flat. After her poems, emcee Don Harfield encouraged our local musicians to team up with Mary to put some of her poems to music.
The music this evening included traditional country songs, traditional fiddle music, folk songs and original songs written by the performers. Thanks go to Peter Thibault, our sound technician this evening, for making all the performers sound great!
Starting at 6:00 pm, Dwayne Hlady, Bob Carter and Pete Homeniuk served up heaping plates of Ukrainian food including perogies (with Jam), hamburgers and hot dogs followed by sweet snacks to keep our energy up. Thanks guys!
Later in the evening, our MLA Jessica Littlewood dropped by to enjoy the music and bring greetings on behalf of the provincial government. Thanks Jessica!
Concluding the evening, Darlene Thibault led the musicians in ”Will the Circle Be Unbroken” followed by “I’ll Fly Away”.
Our next evening is the Gospel and Christmas Music evening at the Maple Street Worship Centre on Saturday, November 21. Perogies and Jam thanks the musicians, the volunteers and the many loyal fans for supporting our local musical talent.
Photos by Rob Hughes, Don Harfield and Anna Tomyn